UGC issues new guidelines for distance learning

The academic session will be from September-October, 2020 to February-March, 2021

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The University Grants Commission (UGC) has rolled out new guidelines that will benefit students enrolling for distance learning programmes. Not only will the universities be required to strictly adhere to the duration of the academic sessions, but all activities undertaken by the higher education institutes will have to be conducted within the territorial jurisdiction

The varsities have been instructed to ensure that the “minimum duration, nomenclature and qualification for degree programme,” which the students are opting for, are “strictly as per UGC notification on the specification of degrees and its amendments”. Precautions were listed in a notice issued by Rajnish Jain, Secretary, UGC pertaining to enrolment in Open and Distance Learning (ODL) programmes.

As per the notice, henceforth, all activities of Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) — admission, counselling sessions, contact programmes, programme delivery and examinations —will have to be conducted strictly within the territorial jurisdiction.

No Central, state, private or deemed universities will be allowed to tie up with private coaching institutes via franchising agreements to either admit students or conduct courses through open, distance learning or online mode.

The admissions will have to be conducted transparently “through the headquarters of the HEIs”. It is suggested that the aspiring students check and thoroughly verify all the information available and claims made by the institutions on the website. In case some discrepancy is noticed, it has to be brought to the notice of the UGC, so that necessary action can be taken.

The Commission has revised the 12-month academic session for this year, which will now start from September-October, 2020 and conclude in February-March, 2021.

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